In which I rave about how cool the Air Force base is.

I learned so much on Tuesday on our trip to the air force base. Getting to hear my professor talk about our research made it into one complete story for me rather than a bunch of disconnected projects. It was very cool. Also, they have awesome facilities at the base. (Prepare for vast quantities of acronyms) We must have seen at least 2 TEMs, 4 SEMs, DMA, DSC, a huge forging/rolling/casting lab, several XRDs, a couple AFM/STM type dealios, some tension/compression/fracture and fatigue rigs, a melt-spinning setup (where we saw a demo!), and we didn’t even see any of their surface analysis stuff. It was cool that we were able to see all that stuff. If we had been touring PNNL, we couldn’t have seen most of it because you have to get radiation certified just to see the TEM/SEM/XRD equipment. It’s kinda ridiculous. Also, the researchers actually USE the equipment, not a bunch of techs. That’s gotta be nice sometimes and a pain sometimes. Not sure which I would prefer. I wonder if they have to do all the sample prep themselves too. That would definitely be a drag.

It was also interesting and enlightening to watch the process of networking/ collaboration/scheming about how to weasel money out of the government for research. Hopefully some of the stuff they discussed will work out, because they have very interesting ideas.

Finally, the food was great. We had the breakfast buffet at the hotel. There is little that makes me happier than potatoes for breakfast. We had lunch at a little Italian store/deli, which was amazing. Then we had dinner at a generic American buffet type place. It was a tasty generic American buffet type place though. I had rhubarb pie and ice cream for dessert which was incredible.

The weather was just fine for the whole 3.25 hour drive there and back, until we got to Cleveland and it rained harder than I have ever seen it rain for about 5 miles. Ridiculous. There were 4 inches of water in my basement, so now a whole bunch of stuff that was stored in my basement is wet and I had to deal with it last night instead of going on a 1.5 hr bike ride and going to Bible study. Sigh.

Anyway, it was a good thing I got the keys to the new house yesterday, because we just cleaned up the wet stuff and moved it on over. Now I have to decide where things should belong there. With a full basement, huge attic room, and tons of closets there shouldn’t be any trouble finding places for things.


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